If you’ve been injured on private property, there are specific instances in which you are able to file a lawsuit. A premises liability lawyer will be able to help you determine whether your case constitutes filing a suit. Read on for more information about what happens when you’ve been injured on private property.
What is the legal responsibility of a property owner?
If you’ve been injured on private property, there may be instances when you can assert that the injury or accident happened because of some dangerous condition on the property for which the property operator or owner should be held responsible. You may be able to collect damages for your personal injury case if you can determine that the owner of the property or the person in charge of the property’s operations were responsible for some unsafe condition on the property that caused you to become injured.
Such properties include any type of accident involving swimming pools, slipping and falling, construction sites, fires, attacks by animals or criminals, faulty or failing equipment, or insufficient security measures.
What do I need to prove?
In order to have a viable premises liability case on your hands after you’ve been injured on private property, you need to be able to prove that:
- The defendant, or person causing the injury, occupied, owned, or leased the property on which you were injured
- You were harmed
- The defendant was negligent in their use of the property
- The defendant’s negligence contributed substantially to your injury
How do I prove negligence on behalf of the defendant?
Negligence in the use of the defendant’s property often depends on the status of the person on the property—in the case of being injured on someone else’s property, that would be you. There are three statuses you could generally be that help in determining whether the defendant was at fault.
- Invitee: If you were an invitee on the defendant’s private property, it means you entered the property for the financial benefit of the defendant (e.g. you purchased a ticket to enter said property). In these instances, the defendant is held responsible to reasonably attend to the property for the safety of others.
- Licensee: To be considered a licensee in a premise liability case, you must have been given express or implied permission for entering and/or using the property. This could be that you were invited to the property for a social event. In these instances, the defendant must have disclosed information about potential dangers that they were aware of to the licensee.
- Trespasser: Now, unless the defendant willfully harmed you while you were on their property, if you were a trespasser and therefore injured while illegally on the property, the defendant is not to be held responsible for your injuries. You could be considered a trespasser if you were on the land by invitation and were later asked to leave, but stayed on the property nonetheless.
Find a South Carolina Premises Liability Lawyer
If you’ve been injured on private property and are in need of a premises liability lawyer, contact Harris & Graves today. We have over two decades of experience with personal injury cases in Greenville and the rest of South Carolina.